Welcome to the 50th post. Here, Kristian is featured in a new interview where he discusses the burden of how success depends on others, financial success, and modern algorithms.
We caught up with the brilliant and insightful Kristian Zenz a few weeks ago and have shared our conversation below.
Kristian, thanks for taking the time to share your stories with us today. Have you been able to earn a full-time living from your creative work? If so, can you walk us through your journey and how you made it happen? Was it like that from day one? If not, what were some of the major steps and milestones and do you think you could have sped up the process somehow knowing what you know now?
Unfortunately, not yet. I believe the process to achieving ‘success’ within the realm of the publishing industry is a canvas for me to paint on. I have been given the opportunity to create something great that will result in financial stability and success. But, I am still painting upon this canvas. I am still learning everyday. Metaphors and motifs aside, it is simply up to me and only me to achieve a full-time living. It’s up to me to take matters into my own hands, and believe in myself when few others do. I may be my biggest fan, but I am also my biggest critic. I must not be afraid to risk my security and safety, and branch out to showcase my work. This work may not be polished and it may not be perfect. My writing will likely improve as I keep creating, leaving my prior work in the dust. But, to be vulnerable and to speak from the soul on stage or in print in the current frame of mind of which I possess is my greatest power. If I lose this power, I will never be able to earn a living from it.
Kristian, love having you share your insights with us. Before we ask you more questions, maybe you can take a moment to introduce yourself to our readers who might have missed our earlier conversations?
The passion I have for writing, poetry, art, and music planted me into its industry. The connection was inevitable. If an opportunity was present to make a living doing what I love, then I was sure to jump on it. I’ve said it before, but I’ll retain the same sentiment: I’m just another person, looking for a purpose. Rick Rubin, the famed rock and hip-hop producer, wrote a book, which I am reading right now. He believes that we are all creatives and we are all artists in our own way— I choose to believe this. No matter whether recognition comes from another person or not, I am still an artist creating for myself. More than ever, I am starting to evolve my work and myself into a coalition that best represents my own point of view. My own satisfaction and my own security is most dependent on myself. Rather than seek to impress a publisher, I seek to impress myself first. I seek to find what stands out within my own eyes. With this mentality in mind, my creations can truly be molded into something unique. This is what I aim to represent in my website. Almost daily, I receive messages and emails where random strangers ask me for my money. They’re looking to mold my vision into something different, something ‘marketable.’ Into the trash and spam these emails and messages go. I will not let the corporate greed of the industry seep into my creative vision. I will learn the rules, but only to break them. I vehemently stick to my own path; at some point, someone will join me. And at that moment, I will be earning money , and not spending it.
Read the rest of the interview here: